A Great poem…

The Way

Paths abound on every side,
Luring us in ways that contradict light.
These paths are faces of desire and influence,
Peddlers of wants and justice to our minds Way.

The way of the mind is open and clear,
Housing Diners and Hotels of futile indulgence.
Feeding the stomach of perpetual hunger,bedding the soul in worldly nothingness.

The Way of God is murky and ominous,
jagged steps of truth mark the trail.
No glamour lines the ascent of this path,
Just broken idols and tears of enlightened souls.

But ways back to the mind litter this path,
Trails of knowledge and righteousness offer rest from the climb.
Idols new respite from the taxation of awareness,
Walled in with pity and judgement of those poor souls down below.

The minds paths are wrong and thus have dull teeth,
For the pleasures are fleeting creating a temporary bind.
The road is free of hindering forces to the end,
Where waits delusion and sorrow and ignorance caged.

God path is pure and traversing is stained,
By the blockades of human Godly ideals.
Detours to cliffs created by man,
in our arrogant supposition of knowing God’s plan.

Andrew Vogelsang

” intrinsic service defines and shapes our beliefs and our soul.”


Original Cliche

I love this song. I just finished rocking out to it in my office. You can click on the title below to listen to it.

Give me some of your examples of an original cliche that you have witnessed in life.

Some that come to my mind is CCM or Christian Contemporary Music. Or maybe Lady Gaga who pales in comparison to the abilities of the late Amy Winehouse.

Original Cliche

Andy Gullahorn

All your fresh ideas are stolen
And your road less traveled by
Is just a worn out path broken in
With the blind leading the blind
You’re a pioneer of nothing
‘cause you reinvent the wheel
That’s been reinvented a million times before you came along
You’re like a broken record song

You can blame it on your daddy
For the role he never played
You can curse the ground he walked upon
And choose to walk the same
Neglecting those who love you
While you trust the ones who don’t
And you smoke the grass that’s greener
‘til it all goes up in flames
And you’re too far gone to change

But the price of being cool
Is to make the same mistakes
You’re story’s nothing new
Just an original cliché

You say that no one understands you
So you walk the world alone
Trying so hard to be different
That you’re really just a clone
In a community of loners
Like a blindfold to the eyes
So you don’t recognize
The chalky human outline on the floor
That says it’s all been done before

‘cause the price of being cool
Is to make the same mistakes
You’re story’s nothing new
Just an original cliché

You see it takes time for the circle
To make its way around
All that stuff you’re getting high on
Will only bring you down

Because the price of being cool
Is to make the same mistakes
You’re story’s nothing new
Just an original cliché

What do you think participatory culture would look like in your church?

Interesting…  Bolger says, “The shift from postmodernity to participatory culture means people find their identity through what they create as opposed to maybe what they consume. … Our churches are still structured in such a way that we do it to them, not inviting them to create worship with us. So, if that’s the case, there’s really no space for people who’ve been formed by our participatory culture in our churches.”

Are we called to be club bouncers at the front door of the kingdom?

<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/24053101″>Art, Conscience, and Theological McCarthyism</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/gospelcoalition”>The Gospel Coalition</a> on <a href=”http://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

I don’t want to be to hard on these guys because some of this conversation was good and I appreciated it… However, much of it will only be understood or appreciated if you live in the same vacuum these people do or as C.S. Lewis so artistically put it in Mere Christianity visited their room for awhile. Again this is what salvation culture looks like vs Gospel culture. They use the word kingdom but they come across as if they are the cops of this kingdom. Here are some thoughts I have after watching this…
1. You cannot redeem the relative and subjective nature of art by critiquing it through an objective and biases lens.
2. There are many aspects of art that are opened for the interpretation of the observer. I gather from this conversation that they have the true observation of all art and they need to be patient with others who don’t… even those who have created it.
4. They have a hard time because in their view subjective and relative truth does not play well with absolute, objective or “true truth”. They would call objective truth their view or opinion of God. I would call objective truth… God. In simple terms Jesus is God’s self portrait.
5. What if God in his kingdom and infinite wisdom is using the irony of art (which uses lies to tell truth) to tell the truth on those who use the truth to tell lies?
6. They speak as if “The Arts” are still saturated and influenced by Christianity in a predominantly Christian culture like the Leave it to Beaver 50’s and 60’s.
7. Look at the reaction that the following picture of Christ received from many “kingdom” minded Christians. Many Christians were outraged, protested about the image and wanted it removed as offensive to them. Would they remove the insults, beatings and crucifixion accounts from their own bibles? Are those not just as offensive? In Christs kingdom he is Lord. Even Lord of those who hate him spit on him or even urinate on him. We should allow the art work of God on a cross to be clearly seen to the whole world. As kingdom minded Christians we should see that many who see the king of this kingdom hate him still just as they did 2000 years ago. This is the picture God wanted to paint. In an attempt to redeem the arts I think many Christians would actually like to change the message of the cross. There is more truth to the picture on the left than there is in many Christian paintings of Christ (for more on that click the picture to see the intent of the artist).

Because of some of the above mentioned observations, If I were a non Christian artist, I think this conversation from the Gospel Coalition would sound pretentious.

Let me put it this way…
What if the Gospel is Gods creative work of art and we are trying to claim the right interpretation. What if those who should be proclaiming it are actually getting in the way of it or protecting it from those who don’t understand enough or who are not like us. What if we are not seeing all kinds of races, cultures, addicts, families and even beliefs coming to see and savor the created work of God on the cross dying for his broken images and rising again to give them new hope because we are more like kingdom club bouncers than heralds. I speak as one who is still working these things out not as one who has it all figured out… for sure.